Where to begin? Hmm. OK. Here is it.
The journey has been interesting. I met the family. They are really very nice, in a needy sort of way. I am not quite sure how the dynamic works between them. They seem to be into one another, and then they have huge fights over nothing. They said something or other about being tired. I don’t get it. How can they be tired after that long ass flight? I must have got 20 hours sleeping done in that time.
Let us back up. I got picked up. We went to some place called the USDA Office in Gainesville. Something about a quest. I was tired so I spent most of this time napping. Then there was a long car ride to Pensacola. There, I actually got to spend some quality time with the family. The Grandparents are pretty cool. The old girl says nice things about me and tells me I am gorgeous and the old boy manages to get down to my level and impart sage advice. I think he is easily confused, though. He talked about smashing and I am all about biting and peeing. Nevermind. They both smelled friendly and I would like to hang out with them again.
They gave me a nice room with a garden view. There were plenty of things to chew and a fair amount of objects to pee on, so it was an enjoyable sojourn. The Big Dude insisted on staying with me. It was all good practice for him. I have begun his training. He comes when I call and lays down pretty much on command. His response to the sit command is awful. We have our work cut out. The food was passable. But I didn’t. The Dysonator has got an odd fetish. Where ever we go she seems to want to put large pieces of paper on the floor. Rose petals I could understand, but newspapers just make the place look like hobo central. She is going to have to go through boot camp when we get where we are going. It is an odd sounding place. Home.
The humans don’t know how to travel light. I packed all I need into my skull and stomach. The Dysonator, in particular, seems to need a fleet of elephants to move her stuff from one resting place to the next. As it was, ‘Grandad’ carried it all to the car and then played a very good game of Tetris packing it all in.
We drove. From the Florida Panhandle to the city of Atlanta. We dodged tornadoes and extreme thunderstorms. I slept pretty soundly. There is something about being in a car, on a person’s lap that just begs us to go to sleep. By the time we got to the hotel for the night. I was well rested and ready to do some serious exploring. Oh, the smells that were wafting about on the outside of the closed and locked door to our room. I begged The Big Dude, but he just said no and fell asleep. The Dysonator was getting frustrated with something called the wifi. I dunno what it is, but apparently it is ‘shit’.
It took us an age to get to the airport in Atlanta. I could smell it of course, just outside the window and to the right. The grandparents couldn’t find it with a map and a flashlight. Add to that the tiny talking lady in the navigation console thing in the dashboard and chaos reigned. A 5 min drive became a 25 minute rush hour adventure of dodging menacing vehicles, shouting and lots of breath sucked through teeth. My god.
Atlanta airport is lovely. They have a little astroturf spot for us 4 legged legends to stroll about on. At one end there is a little fire hydrant to be liberally sprayed with sweet smelling pee. I could have spent 40 to 50 minutes there, breathing in the stories of all the dogs to pass through. Instead, I got dragged along, told to hurry up and then upon completion of my sacred toilet rather unceremoniously stuffed back into my crate. I didn’t complain, but I am keeping a mental list. A shit list. It is short right now. Just the human species and an Alligator on it. But there are plenty of pages available to adapt it into a book if needed.
We said our goodbyes. The humans flew Cattle Class and I flew Pet Class. I settled down for a nap prior to boarding. I was actually looking forward to watching the world fly by as we took off. I was a little surprised to wake up find myself airborne, in a dark cargo hold and in dire need of a pee.
We finally arrived in Incheon. My crate was in a bit of a state. When I was sleeping some asshole had wandered by and thrown in a few choice steaming, smelling turds. Then, the little turbulence we experienced picked me up, bounced me off the roof of the crate and then dropped me right in the shit. I ask you. Who would do such a thing? Probably a nazi. The service sucked, too. No food and no movies. Shocking. But what do you expect for $200?
South Korea. Land of the Morning Calm. It remains to be seen. So far I expected it to be warmer, the south part of the name implying a degree of summer and as for the calm part, I am leaning towards bollocks.
I announced my arrival to the Koreans in the loudest voice I could muster. My bark echoed through the terminal for all to hear. Timbre and pitch perfect. There was a resonance to my voice that belied the fact of my youth. In traditional fashion, I proclaimed my name, age, the particulars of my urinary odor, a brief run down of the complexities of my anal sac secretions and brought greetings from the dogs of my ancestry. I gave a 700 generation run down of my pedigree on both sides of the family, declared myself parasite free. I offered the usual overtures of peace with regards to my intentions toward their country. I waxed lyrical about my honorable intentions with regard to their bitches. It was one of the great dog oratories. If any of my forebears or fellow countrydogs had been there to hear it, well, I would be draped in finery and covered in medals about now.
And what of the reception to such an oration, Watson? Fuck all. There might have been a desultory bark from the departure hall, but nothing from where I was. After a moment or two, I realized that I was on the far side of the planet. Perhaps these people didn’t speak my language. perhaps they didn’t speak at all! So, I did what anyone would do in my situation. I said it all again, but this time slower and louder.
The Dysonator and Big Dude wheeled me outside in my crate. I was a little offended at first but soon realized they only had my best interests at heart. It was cold. Not just a little bit cold, not like that winter we had in my home state of Florida 2 week ago. No. It was insanely cold. My nose and clenched rectum told me it was about -12 degrees. Jaysus! I offered quick thanks to the humans for saving my paws from having to walk about on that cold floor and snuggled down into my freshly changed blanket to hide or hibernate.
Once my core temperature had begun to stabilize I took note of my surroundings. We were outside and surrounded by a whole mess, a veritable gaggle of people. Never one to miss an opportunity, I began my greeting again. Louder and slower than ever before. Someone out there must have been able to understand. I quickly gathered an audience. A few of them seemed to want to surrender! They had their hands up in the air and keened and wailed like their entire line had been wiped out in a meteorite strike. Some of the braver ones stuck fingers into my crate. A few looked like they were ready to break into a run. I was most perplexed. Had these people never seen a Watson before?
After what seemed like an eternity a bus rocked up. The doors opened and I witnessed something utterly beyond canine understanding. 20 people tried to get off the bus. 40 people tried to get on the bus. AT THE SAME TIME! Madness! The level of stupidity, of spatial unawareness, or selfish idiocy needed to try and do that is absolutely staggering, yet there it was. Playing out in front of me. If only I had opposable thumbs and a camera! I could have made a fortune selling the footage to psychologists all over the world! The Big Dude was muttering about common sense and I got the impression that this was a commonplace event in these parts.
After 20 minutes of people pushing and shoving on and off the bus and the Big Dude getting more and more irate. We finally set off. Now, I am in favour of the warmth. Cold and I get on like a house in a state of incipient fire. But what was happening on that bus was probably reportable to the Hague. We were being cooked. The vents were down at floor level. At my level. The heat produced in the bowels of the bus did little to differentiate it from stories of hell. I was reminded of the stories of the Brazen Bull from ancient Greece. My temperature began to rise. Higher and higher, I started to pant, then to really pant, then to wish I was dead and then, at the point I was ready to tell the interrogator anything he wanted to know, it stopped. We stopped. We disembarked. Back into the cold. There was white stuff on the ground all over the place. It looked like the sand on the Gulf coast, but it had an aura of menace that I wasn’t prepared for. It didn’t offer the succulent promise of ice cream or cold beer. It looked more likely to trip you up and cause serious lower back injury, and then steal your wallet for good measure.
It was at this point that I thought The Dysonator and The Big Dude were going to kill each other. They were arguing about anything and everything. I was a little apprehensive that my choice of adoptive humans would both die, here in the cold and leave me to fade away in my crate, close to the white stuff and surrounded by a group of people genetically incapable of waiting in a line. Thankfully, when the day seemed the darkest, another of the non-queuers arrived and defused the situation with an offer of warmth and food. The Dysonator issued some orders and The Big Dude muttering quietly about ‘obvious’ things loaded the car with bags and me. We were saved!
The house had a small human in it! Oh, joy! I spent a good 90 minutes practicing my hunting skills on it. I managed to bring it down from both sides. At least once I got the drop on it with a heroic leap right into its shoulder blades. The results were satisfactory. A few tears and much delight from The Big Dude. He and I might just get along. After a bite to eat and a much-needed shower we took to our beds for the night.
3 hours later. 3. Not 6, or 8, but 3. The little human started screaming. Dear god. You would have thought it was being murdered. All it could say between sobs was ‘Mommy’! To my ear, it was very accusatorial. Perhaps she tried to poison it. God knows I would if it caterwauled like that with any regularity. The parents took it off to the hospital (a vet for humans) and The Big Dude and The Dysonator decided to drive home. 5 hours or so later. and a temperature change from -14 to 3, we arrived in Song Jeong. My new home. My place. My kingdom. My god, what a lot of trees to piss on and there is also what has to be the world’s largest swimming pool to play in right there. Right next to the beach! It is so damned big it has tides!